German / Germany

Tonspur. Wie ich die Welt von gestern verließ
(Audiotrack. How I left yesterday’s world)

Krones, Susanne / Hintze, Olaf (text)
München: Dt. Taschenbuch-Verl., 2014.
– 360 p.
(Series: dtv; 65005: Reihe Hanser)
ISBN 978-3-423-65005-2

GDR / 1989 | Escape | Berlin Wall | Biography | Non-fiction

This very special combination of historical documentary and biography is one of the many books published on the 25th anniversary of the Fall of the Berlin Wall is. It focuses on Olaf Hintze, who escaped from the German Democratic Republic to the West via Hungary in the summer of 1989. His life story stands for all those who grew up in the GDR and became increasingly exasperated with the government and their repressions.

At the same time, ≫Tonspur≪ is also the very personal story of Hintze, which becomes particularly visible through songs that trace his coming-of-age. The book is structured chronologically, yet interspersed with many flashbacks that create a densely woven, detailed net, saturated with information. It both describes everyday events and hints at the socialist society with all its constraints and shortcomings. What becomes blatantly obvious is how paralysing and static life in Eastern Germany was for many people. (Age: 12+)